Slate Breakdown | WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and Corales Puntacana Championship

Slate Breakdown | WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and Corales Puntacana Championship
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It’s always nice to start an article the week after picking a winner. Taylor Moore “stole” the victory last Sunday with an exceptional finish at the Valspar Championship. Moore worked himself out of a tight spot on each of the last three holes, playing them at one under, besting fan favorite Jordan Spieth and soon-to-be dad Adam Schenk. Moore's ELITE cards were going for around $150 before the event and have now doubled or more after the event. On top of that, Wyndham Clark added another top 5 finish, and his cards have at least doubled since last week's article. In contrast, I don't expect that performance every week, but planning and preparing in for PGA TOUR Reignmakers undoubtedly provides an edge.  

This week’s slate is the first of three “dual tournament” weeks the inaugural season of DraftKings Reignnmakers PGA TOUR. Below I'll get into the tournaments, the golfers, and provide a handful of options for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and Corales Puntacana Championship. 

The Tournaments

This week's two tournaments are the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and the Corales Puntacana Championship.

WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play

The WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play features 64 golfers playing head-to-head matches in a “World Cup” style bracket. There are 16 groups, each composed of four golfers who must play three matches against each other. The top person from each group advances then to a single elimination knockout round. The golf will start on Wednesday morning, so be sure to get your lineups in early! This is considered a “deluxe event” and holds a total prize pool of $350,000 and a top prize of $20,000 in the ELITE contest.  

Corales Puntacana Championship 

The second tournament is the Corales Puntacana Championship, a typical PGA TOUR event featuring around 130 players in a 72-hole stroke play event. The big thing to keep up with this week is all the withdrawals, as many of the supposed favorites of the event have withdrawn, including Brandon Wu, Stephan Jäger, Greyson Sigg, Jhonattan Vegas, and the aforementioned Schenk. The total prize pool for this tournament is $175,000 with a top prize of $10,000 for ELITE and REIGNMAKERS contests. 

The Courses

Austin Country Club hosts the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and provides a fantastic layout for the unique format. The course offers plenty of challenging holes where a birdie is almost guaranteed to win you a hole in the match play format. 

The Corales Puntacana Championship is played on the beautiful oceanfront course at the Puntacana Resort and Club. It’s a relatively straightforward “resort” course, with wide fairways and more accessible greens. But, since it is right on the edge of the Caribbean, winds are typically a big defense of the golf course and help keep scores from getting too low.

Last 5 Corales Puntacana Championship Winners & Winning Score to Par:

  • 2022: Chad Ramey (-17)
  • 2021: Joel Dahmen (-12) 
  • 2020: Hudson Swafford (-18)
  • 2019: Graeme McDowell (-18)
  • 2018: Brice Garnett (-18)

The Golfers

Now that I've set the stage for the events, it’s time to talk specifically about the golfers competing at them here this week. First, the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, where most of the world’s best golfers are set to compete. As I already mentioned, golfers are put into 16 groups, and each group is headlined by the lowest-ranked golfers in the Official World Golf Ranking. For example, Group 1 is headlined by Scottie Scheffler, the No. 1 player in the world. That process is repeated until group 16, which Sungjae Im, the No. 18 player in the world, occupies. Justin Thomas is not playing in this event. Here is the Top 5 board for this tournament:

Second, as I already discussed, the Corales Puntacana Championship field is more fluid and has been hit with a ton of withdrawals. Now, the tournamenet is headlined by Wyndham Clark. Others top players include Thomas Detry, Joel Dahmen, Taylor Pendrith, and Matt Wallace. The top 5 board looks like this:

Four-Ball: 4 DraftKings Reignmakers PGA TOUR Targets

Since there are two tournaments, I'm shaking things up in this section this week. Below find two targets for each tournament.

WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play

1. Tyrrell Hatton: Hatton had a surge through the Florida swing, finishing in the top five in each of his last two events. While he wasn’t a particularly large part of the story at THE PLAYERS a few weeks ago, he just ended up as the closest competitor to Scheffler and is raising his game, even in big spots. Interestingly enough, he does not like Augusta National Golf Club, the site of The Masters...which is maybe why he has already committed to playing in the Valero Texas Open next week. He will likely be the favorite at that event and has a solid Match Play group, providing us with a solid two weeks of usage. 

2. Corey Conners: Conners provides a similar two week optionality and while he drew a tough group this week and needs to face Cameron Young, Conners made it all the way to the final four last year. He is still rather cheap for someone likely to be the second favorite to win the event next week. 

Corales Puntacana Championship

1. Dylan Wu: With so many withdrawals, the pool of players with DraftKings Reignmakers cards at any tier is shrinking. Therefore, just getting golfers through to the weekend will put many lineups in great spots this week. Wu has made the weekend in each of his last five events, something I can get behind this week. 

2. Carl Yuan: The PGA Tour rookie from China hasn’t had the start he was looking for in his first season, but he’s ranked as one of the better ball-strikers in this event and finally broke a five-straight missed cut streak at last week’s Valspar Championship. If he can figure out his short game here this week, he could earn his first top 20 given the strength of the field.

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